Opinion
19:08 22 September 2020
Post by: WBJ

How Spain is battling the crisis?

Top diplomats in Warsaw told the WBJ in August 2020, how their countries are battling the crisis. One of them was Francisco Javier Sanabria Valderrama, Spanish Ambassador

How Spain is battling the crisis?

How has your country been fighting the crisis?

On March 14 a state of emergency was declared. Three days later, the largest mobilization of resources in Spanish history was approved: a fiscal package of €200 billion, that’s equivalent to 14 percent of our GDP. The package includes a furlough scheme for companies affected by the crisis. They can temporarily send their employees home or reduce their working hours, while workers receive unemployment benefits. The package also includes deferral and waivers of social security payments, €100 billion for entrepreneurs and freelancers, €10 billion for the main State Finance Agency (ICO) to redirect credit to entrepreneurs and a €2 billion insurance policy for exporting SMEs. 


What measures should be adopted to make sure that trade continues between economies?

After the 2008 financial crisis, our economy went through a dramatic transformation that boosted competitiveness. Exports increased by 10 percentage points of the GDP. The commercial balance of payments had a surplus since 2012. As a result of this turnaround, our economy grew well above its peers. Free trade is crucial for recovery. The EC is closely monitoring the correct functioning of the European market to ensure that no trade obstacles emerge. In Spain, we have taken specific measures to facilitate industrial imports such as the €2 billion insurance policy for Spanish exporting SMEs and the streamlining of customs procedures. 


How safe is your country for travelers?

Spain has taken measures in order to make sure that we remain a safe destination. Our government has issued 21 guidelines with technical and health recommendations for different tourist branches. Public transportation has implemented all international health and safety standards. We are well-prepared to welcome visitors. Our tourism sector has made a huge effort to adapt to the new situation and has implemented effective actions. The Canary Islands have signed an agreement with an insurance company in order to cover all related medical expenses, repatriation and extension of the stay of visitors if they were to get infected during their stay in Spain.



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